Tuesday, July 14, 2009

How to annoy your labor and delivery nurse...

No job is without frustrations and annoyances. I love my job but have had to learn to laugh at the things that happen daily while I'm at work. You gotta laugh to keep from pulling your hair out! So without further ado...
**** Please continue reading only if you have a sense of humor.

If you want to annoy your labor and delivery nurse…

Show up at labor and delivery without having even called your doctor first! Trust me, your doctor will "love" this too.

Call 911 and arrive by ambulance after having 1 contraction at home. (If you come in by ambulance, we are usually betting that you will either be holding a baby in your arms when you arrive or you'll be 1 cm/30/-4.

Approximately 15 seconds after you push that baby out, please by all means, ask "How much does she weigh? or How long is he?" (note:When you see scales or a measuring tape, this might be a good indicator of when to ask this question.)

Push your call light and when your nurse comes in the door, ask her to hand you something on the table right next to you.

Push your call light, when your nurse comes in, ask her for some ice, then when she comes back in the room, ask her for a spoon, then when she comes back with that, ask her for some socks, a toothbrush and some toothpaste. (Seriously, did you not think to bring a toothbrush to the hospital? You knew you'd be here for at least 2 days.)

Rate your pain a 10 out of 10 while lying in bed watching MTV and talking on the phone with a friend.

Please tell your mother and mother in law to coordinate schedules and alternate coming in every 7 minutes to ask the following questions...
"How are things going?" - Well about the same as 7 minutes ago.
"Has she dilated any more?" Well, we try not to do cervical exams every 5 minutes, you know that whole infection thing. If you want I can just keep my hand up there all day long so we'll know immediately when anything happens.
"When do you think the baby will be here?" Well if i knew that I'd be making a lot more money than I am right now.
"Can you come get me if anything changes?" Sure thing, if something happens, the first thing I'll do is walk away from my patient to come inform you.

Also, tell your whole family to stand behind me while I am charting and comment on the contractions and the baby's heart rate incessantly saying - "OOhhh, look at those contractions, wow they are big!" "Wow, that one went off the chart!" "Wow is the baby's heart rate supposed to be doing that? Should you call the doctor?" "How close together are the contractions?"

When you get nauseated and throw up, don't grab the bag/emesis basin I just gave you, just throw up in the bed or on the floor and then you and your whole family can watch me clean it up.

Tell me that you are uncomfortable and then you and your baby daddy proceed to lay there and watch while I struggle to move your deadweight epiduralized self into a "comfortable" position. Seriously people, it's called LABOR for a reason. It's not a day at the spa. This is especially "funny" when your nurse is pregnant.

When it's time to push and I ask "Dad" to help hold a leg, by all means, dare him to tell me no. First of all, I cannot hold both of your dead legs up and help you push at the same time. Second of all, he got you in this mess, it's the LEAST he can do.

Get your whole family to come stand at the desk, watch the strips from other rooms and start asking questions about other patients. Ever heard of HIPAA people??

Tell me you want to be "No information" and then don't tell your family what room you are in. Then get mad at us for not telling them you are here when they ask for you at the desk. What part of NO INFORMATION is not clear to you?

Get your family to go in and out of the after hours door to smoke (the one where we have to buzz them in) over and over and over again! And the button on the wall, just press it once, you don't have to lay on it like a horn. BEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEP!

When I ask your family to go to the waiting room, tell them to just congregate in the hall right outside your door blocking the way to the OR.


Ok, that is all for now, I may add some later. These are all so funny because all these situations happen VERY frequently. You can ask any labor nurse and I guarantee she has encountered all these situations more than once. It really does start to become funny because everbody does and says the same things! I really do love my job though and can't imagine doing anything else!

*****I no longer work in labor and delivery, but I loved being a nurse and I treated my patients like gold.  I never voiced any of these annoyances to a patient, ever!  If you watch any of my birthing videos you can see that I think childbirth is an amazing thing.  I made my patients feel like they were the most important woman in the world and did my very best to insure that they had a wonderful and memorable birth experience.  So if the cranky pants of the world could please refrain from sending me an ugly comment that would be great!  =)

55 comments:

annieck said...

Ha ha ha!!! This is hysterical! One of my best friends is a L&D nurse, and she has told me some wild stories. Don't know how you girls do it! I'm sure my patients would read my annoyance all over my face. :)

I feel better now. I didn't do any of those things, and I don't think my family did either. Whoo!
The first time around, though, my first nurse (before I went home, praise the Lord) seemed to be furious with me that I was going natural. She was so irritated. She asked me, as I was in the middle of painful contractions, if I was going to homeschool my child (seriously...I hadn't even had the baby yet). I told her 'no', and she said, "Well, you know he/she can't go to school without a hep b shot." At that point, I had to inform her of Alabama law.
Not only that, but she had some long fake nails that were incredibly painful when she would check me. My friend (the nurse) told me she's not supposed to have those. Maybe she put them on just for me. :)
Every other nurse that I've ever had has been SO awesome. I am so blessed to have had great nurses for every delivery.
Ok, sorry for the novel. Thanks for sharing and giving me a laugh!

Elaine said...

GOOD! I didn't do ANY of those :) God bless you woman for doing your job... and very well I might add.

Rachael said...

Whew...glad I don't do any of those! That is CRAZY...I can only imagine the stuff you encounter though!

meg said...

I was holding my breath while reading these, praying that I didn't just do any of them! :)
Thankfully, I'm in the clear.
I do want to thank you for helping my time at Brookwood to be so great. All of my nurses were just awesome, and I had such a great experience! Bless you for all that you do, day in and day out. This first-time mama is thankful for sweet nurses like you!!!

Allen and Stephanie Drew said...

that's hysterical. don't think i did any of those...though i probably did something because i didnt like my postpartum nurse. she was only nice and attentive when there was a room full of guy friends visiting allen. loved my labor and delivery nurse.

Corey said...

Those are great!!! I'm so glad I didn't do any of those!! Bless you for what you have to go through!! I have always said that it takes a very special person to be a nurse, and now I think especially labor and delivery nurses! Thanks for all you do!!

The Hoppers said...

I am safe too! Although I didn't know I was supposed to call my doctor when I thought I was in labor. I was induced with Lawson. And they never told me that anyway. So I call my doctor and she tells me if I am in labor? I guess I should check with them on Friday.:) Lawson was a good leg holder! And if my parents and in-laws asked these questions, I apologize.:)

Ole Miss Mom said...

I'll make some mental notes....I don't think I've done any of those things...but sometimes you're too drugged up to remember how you acted!! I bet you have some GREAT stories!!

Kat said...

These are hilarious! I bet you could write a book about some of the ridiculous stunts people have pulled.

The Cora Family said...

This is TOO funny! I couldn't stop smiling and had to share with my fellow L&D nurses ;) Seems things don't change - no matter where you are!

JoAnnC. said...

SO TRUE! I've been an L&D nurse for 20 years and my all time favorite is when they come to the hospital saying they lost their mucus plug....and they bring it with them!!! I SO want to tell them, "Wait right here, I'll go get my camera, take a picture of it, and put it on the back of a milk carton! Maybe someone knows where it is!!"
Thanks for a laugh!

Siobhan said...

I absolutely love this. I wish all my pts would read this before coming to the hospital. I'm so going to share this with my fellow L&D nurses. :)

Katrina said...

haha, so funny.... I can bet after reading this my L&D nurses loved me! I must have been the easiest patient.... ;-)

Southlady_1 said...

OMG!! I was an L&D nurse at Brookwood for years! I want to move back to BHam but worry there may not be jobs!
I think you hit most of the things that always get me but I'll add:
1. Come by ambulance writhing in pain, family 3 mins behind you (you KNOW I called cause I didn't have a ride) and you are discharged in an hour because you aren't in labor. Heck, you may not even be pregnant!
2. BEG for pain med.....but as I'm giving it, "WAIT...will it hurt the baby?" I've always wanted to reply that special education is available and they'll do just fine.
3. I really wanna breastfeed...but I'm tired now and besides, I don't have any milk yet. Give him a bottle.
Right.

Colleen Michaud said...

And this is why I never told my family that I was in labor until after the babies arrived! Only my mom knew about my son because she had to come take care of my daughter....too bad I had him before she could even get to my house. Love fast labors!

virginia stearns said...

as an L&D nurse of 35 +years, these stories are hilarious but way too true!! Makes our lives never boring at work! Keep your sense of humor pregnant ladies & L&D nurses, it helps us get through labor & delivery!

Tanya Flournoy said...

Maybe because I am a labor and delivery nurse and all of these things happen on a regular basis. I think a bunch of us should get together and write a comedy act, lol..

Jen said...

I shamefully admit I called the nurses to change our baby's diaper during our stay...almost all of them. I didn't know any different. They were probably not happy with us.

Jen said...

I feel embarrassed to admit I called the nurses to come change our baby's diaper...almost every time. I didn't know any different. Now I see how crazy that was. They changed the first one so I thought it was protocol. Plus I had never changed a diaper before. They were probably not too happy with me!!

Jennifer said...

I had a LD nurse who was sweet enough to try to check how dilated I was WHILE I WAS STANDING!! I was in so much pain (natural deliver---you should probably add that one to your list!), had been in transition for hours, and didn't think I could lay down to save my life. Looking back, she was so sweet and brave...my water hadn't even broken yet! It broke less than 5 minutes after that fiasco...she deserves an award!!!

Jennifer said...

My L&D nurse was a saint! I was in so much pain (natural birth---you might want to add that one to your list!), had been in transition for hours, and didn't think I could lay down to save my life. That angel actually laid on the floor between my legs to try to check how dilated I was!!! Looking back, I can't believe she was willing to try that...my water broke not less than 3 minutes later! That lady deserves an award, for sure!

beth smith said...

I was the worst pt ever! I hided in the bathroom bc that was the only time they would let me up....I finally got back in bed and got an epidural but puked all over the place and the MD was yelling to stop throwing up & be still.... then I pushed for 3 hr and then I started puking again ....so then off for c section ....crying & puking drugs equals sleep then best. C section ever! And let's not forget I took my own Cather out that and tried to signed AMA! I felt bad that L&d nurse especially dealing with an ER nurse!!!!

Southlady_1 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
mbroderick53 said...

As an L&D Nurse I can assure you this stuff is not fiction. My favorite of all times is(can't believe you missed this one) a pregnant teen's mom saying she won't leave the room since she has never left her daughter alone. Roflmao, oh yes you did honey or your daughter wouldn't be in that bed, by the way where is that bum

mbroderick53 said...

As an L&D Nurse I can assure you this stuff is not fiction. My favorite of all times is(can't believe you missed this one) a pregnant teen's mom saying she won't leave the room since she has never left her daughter alone. Roflmao, oh yes you did honey or your daughter wouldn't be in that bed, by the way where is that bum

Laura Pickford said...

I want to reapond when they ask if the pain medication will hurt the baby 'Oh! You wanted the NON baby killing medicine?'

Risa said...

""When do you think the baby will be here?" Well if i knew that I'd be making a lot more money than I am right now." I do say this all the time to the FOB/and or mother to be. After being a labor and delivery nurse and certified nurse midwife for over 34 years--it never ceases to amaze me that this happens many times a day. The mucus plug one is also priceless!

Mary nottelling said...

My favorite in triage is:
Pt: My water broke
Nurse: are you still leaking? Did you wear a pad in?
Pt: NO
Nurse: what were you doing when it happened?
Pt: just laying down and it just came out.
Nurse: what were you doing before that?
Pt: (looking around not making eye contact) nothing
Nurse: Did you have sex?
Pt: yes
Nurse: (after testing and nitrazine is neg/everything is ne) it isn't your water. PT: what is it? Nurse: you had sex what do you think it is? PT: that has never happened before.
What goes in comes out folks, seriously just because you are pregnant does not mean it changes. after Sex you have discharge... if it was good for him.lol

Cindy said...

Our have everyone go to the waiting room. Have a family member call into labor room ask to put cell on speaker phone. Thus all birthing noises, grunts, groans can be heard throughout the waiting room for all to enjoy. Family and complete strangers!

Cindy said...

Our have everyone go to the waiting room. Have a family member call into labor room ask to put cell on speaker phone. Thus all birthing noises, grunts, groans can be heard throughout the waiting room for all to enjoy. Family and complete strangers!

heather logan said...

L&D Nurses called me "Pizza Delivery Lady"...why? 4 of 6 children all popped out in 30mins or less! Might I add no screaming, no meds, over 9lb babies and a couple of times almost before the Doc arrived. To bad it wasn't 30 mins or less and the delivery is FREE! Haha!

PDXNurse said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
PDXNurse said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Cali4niaRN said...

Wow! Hit the nail on the head! I love it when "Opt out" ("No Information") patients are on their cell phones posting to Facebook every 5 minutes about exactly where they are and what is happening!

Lizz4210 said...

Oh wow!!!!!! I can't stop laughing.......I've been in L&D for 13yrs and by all means it has not changed at all. Don't forget about the unbelievable names these mothers name theirbabies. Thus is tooo much....LMBO!!!!!!

Lizz4210 said...

OMG.....I can't stop laughing....these things truly happen. But don't forget about the bazaar names these babies. You wouldn't believe it if I told you. LMBO!!!!!

blogger said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
We Are His said...

Almost 30 years in L&D....so absolutely true! Seen all of these multiple times. It's part of what makes L&D what it is, lol!

ejin84 said...

I worked L&D for 15 years and now I work in an OB/GYN office. I try to make sure my patients are WELL informed as to when to go, what to take, what NOT to take, etc. Yes, I have experienced ALL of those situations! BUT, you forgot to mention that when the woman comes by ambulance...usually because she was scared and didn't have a ride...they usually are followed by many, many family and friends. Any one of them could have given her a ride...and they usually give her a ride home because she isn't in labor.
I loved reading these...they brought back great memories. :)

Sherry Hatton said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jen Hollums said...

Next Summer I will be with my daughter while she is having her baby, my first Grand baby. I will have to remember these things...and try not to do them! lol

Amanda Ansbach said...

I'm not sure if this has been mentioned, but I love when the first thing out of the patient's mouth when they arrive in triage is "where is my juice and socks?" Then when said patient makes it to L&D their family empties the refrigerator completely out!!

Sweetie Sweetie said...

I forgot my toothbrush along with everything else, being that i was sent straight from the doctors office at 37 weeks.

lakemomof4 said...

One that you kinda left out was the wonderful one that my husband asked at all 4 births "how lond do you think this will take" I looked at him every time and said do you think she has a majical ball that lets her know , shut up sit down and enjoy the ride. Not to mention they were all natural births no pain meds or epidurals? Praise God for you ladies who can do the whole epidural thing. So to say least he felt almost every painful contraction I had and then prayed to God when it was over!












lakemomof4 said...

Okay I think my favorite one was when my husband would ask the nurse how long do you think this will last? I would look at him and say do you think she has a magical looking glass that she can predict this. Sit down shut and enjoy the ride. I got my revenge with every bad contraction with no drugs or epidural praise you ladies who can do that, I let him know exactly how long it took. Then when I had delivered I would look at him and say okay you can now take your Oxygen mask off the ride is over but now the real fun starts!

Barb said...

My husband went to Boston to pick up his grandmother at the airport- didn't really think I was in labor. He called at 2 pm to see how I was doing and if I was ready to come home! Told him to sit down- his daughter was here. As an RN that had worked at the hospital I knew all the codes- around midnight when I was half awake and awaiting the baby to nurse, the overhead page called a Code 99 (cardiac arrest), I flew out of bed johnny flapping open and ran towards the code- luckily one of the night nurses stopped me and asked where I was going. Didn't I feel foolish saying I'm on the Code team!

Kathy Kuntz said...

my favorite was the lady who called the ambulance to take one block to the hospital l&d because "it was her due date". no labor, no broken water-----just her due date. Then she wanted the medic to take her back home!!! done l&d for almost 40 years--stories stay the same with a bit different twist!!

Heather said...

I am with so many and glad I didn't pull any of these. I did however beg for drugs, when I was denied, I told them it was fine many of us were born on drugs and we are there and fine, but had progressed too far to have them. I'm pretty sure at that point they all thought I was whacked. I had a very quick labor and had some fantastic nurses. I was one of those unprepared women who drove herself to the hospital and didn't want to go up to the desk because I wasn't positive I was in labor. I thought my water had broken about an hour before but wasn't sure and didn't want to be one of those first time pregnant woman that ran at first scare. Just over 2 hours later I was fully delivered. Oops! I will not be fooling around this time! Thank you nurses for all you do!

Catherine said...

Make sure you hold your phone in a tight grip and update your facebook status constantly and then make sure you facebook before you even look at your whole baby and especially try to facebook and text while your new baby is crying to breastfeed. Make sure you don't say please or thank you. Have all of your family members and friends wear a different and annoying amount of perfume. Make sure you invite friends you've only known a month or less to witness your awesome birth, and then complain that the rooms are too small and why don't you have a flat screen tv in every room.

There are many days that I say thank you to patients for coming in and truly mean it because they have given some thought to their birth and treat themselves and their health care professionals with love and respect. Sadly, those days are getting fewer and fewer. But I still love my job, and consider each birth sacred and miraculous event.

This was a good blog!!!!!

Rachel said...

that is so accurate it's hilarious!!!! This is coming from an ob/gyn resident. Half I get to suffer through with you...but other half I still understand the pain. It's still an amazing job...but good to take the annoying parts and laugh them out.

Nana said...

Oh my goodness, do people really do that?? LOL. I am so glad my kids are older too and now grandkids are having babies!! I will definitely remind granddaughter next July to behave in the L/D room. Thanks for all your hard work girls, where would mothers be without you?? Blessings to you.

love a nurse said...

I have been a labor and delivery nurse for 33 years and have seen and heard ALL of the above!.
I love it when I can't even get a brief history or do any patient teaching without competing with a cellphone.
And, oh by the way...no one is ever supposed to have pain. Who knew?? ha ha! Guess I still love it, though, since I'm still an OB nurse! :}

Kathy 725 said...

Loved the article. As a retired L & D nurse I have witnessed everyone of these patients. Another favorite was the first time mom coming in with a three page "birthing plan". We nurses always called her a c-section walking. Also loved when our ER nurses who could handle a major trauma would rush laboring moms up on the elevator to L & D. One time they oopsed and we "delivered" a baby out of her pants leg!

Suzette S said...

Love reading all the posts!! Don't forget the lovely ladies who come with the birth plan, who we know are now guaranteed a section btw, The things patients feel the need to put on their birth plans are amazingly insulting. Oh! I'm not allow to ask you if you want pain meds or an epidural? Really? You think you are soooo weak, you might cave and actually take the epidural? You want to do skin to skin right away? Well, toots, we want you to do skin to skin ASAP too! You want to breastfeed as soon as the baby comes out? Well, how about your baby breathes a bit first? Here's some news for you, we labor nurses actually want the birth of your child to be an awesome experience for you! We actually want you to bond with your baby! We are your advocates and our hearts break if things don't go as you planned too. We chose this career because we are passionate about helping you and your baby arrive in this world safely and all healthy.

Deb Wallhead said...

I'm sure the L&D nurse thought she was just humoring me when I told her the baby was coming 5 minutes after she had just checked me. She insisted I was fine; however, after she rechecked me she suddenly decided she had better call the doctor. Sometimes the mother does know what is happening. My doc didn't really have a chance to scrub ... threw some gloves on and sat down and caught my son coming out.